The British Herpetological Society

The Herpetological Journal is the Society's prestigious quarterly scientific journal. Articles are listed in Biological Abstracts, Current Awareness in Biological Sciences,Current Contents, Science Citation Index, and Zoological Record.

The 2017/18  impact factor of The Herpetological Journal is 1.268

ISSN 0268-0130


pdf 08. Testing the reliability of ring counts for age determination in the Egyptian tortoise (Testudo kleinmanni)

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pp. 209-211
Authors: Attum, Omar; Rabea, Bassim; Duffy, Kate & El Din, Baha M.

Abstract: Counting shell growth rings is a common method of determining the ages of young tortoises, but the accuracy must be validated for each species. The objective of this study was to test if the age of Egyptian tortoises Testudo kleinmanni can be reliably determined by counting the growth rings on their shells. Our results suggest that as individuals become larger and older, age is more difficult to determine. Seventy-five percent of individuals below 90 mm carapace length (n=24) exhibited a one ring per year relationship, which was the case for only 6% of the 16 individuals with a carapace length above 90 mm. Ring counts were relatively reliable for determining ages of tortoises five years or younger, as 76.2% of these individuals exhibited a one ring per year relationship. The threshold age for the reduced reliability of ring counts is around six years of age, as only 16% of the tortoises six years or older exhibited a one ring per year relationship.

Keywords: GROWTH RINGS, CHELONIANS, ANNULI

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IMPORTANT NOTE - JUNE 2020

Please note that as from Volume 31 Number 1 (January 2021) on, the Herpetological Journal will be available as an online publication only - the last print edition will be Volume 30 Number 4.   

Aligning with this change, it is now no longer possible to purchase a subscription that includes a print copy of the HJ.  All members who have existing HJ print subscriptions that remain active as at end June 2020 will receive the full four 2020 print editions.  New subscribers or renewals after this time will only have option to subscribe to the online only subscription package.  Subscription pricing has been amended to reflect the content changes.